Archive for the ‘General’ Category

We’ve Finished 8th Grade!


14 Jun

cooltext188887424537516

 

Well, it’s official. We’re finished with our eighth grade year! Can you believe it? I can’t. Next year we’re crossing into what I feel to be the scariest homeschooling territory: High School.

We ended this year with my son taking a CLEP Test for College Algebra after completing Saxon Algebra 2, and using the CLEP prep on the DIVE CD that came as part of his math package. Navigating the road to signing up for the CLEP, while getting appropriate ID for a minor under 13 was a bit of a hassle, but we managed to do what we had to do. Along with LOTS of hours of studying, my son went in and passed with flying colors. Yay! We were just both glad it was over, and relieved that we didn’t have to worry about math for awhile.

 

calc

With the CLEP test behind us, it was time for me to figure out my son’s curriculum for next year. Normally I would have figured it out months ago, but I’ve been a bit behind with planning high school. Maybe it was a bit of being overwhelmed with the thought of planning high school. I was a bit unsure how I wanted to handle it, and not quite sure what I wanted to use for certain subjects. I had only one or two things decided on. (more…)

A Great Bag for Hauling Books and Supplies


11 Mar

H2T Executive Rolling Briefcase - Business 15.5" Laptop Holder TSA Compliant-Black

 

If you’re looking for a bag to take books and supplies with you, to homeschool on-the-go or at alternative locations, then this Executive Rolling Briefcase is a good option. I used to use a rolling crate, but this is a bit more stylish, and more efficient. I’ve only been using this this year, but really enjoy it.

There are three things that make this bag great: (more…)

Online Course Sale – Ends Tomorrow 1/11/16


10 Jan

Well, I just found out about this, otherwise I would have posted it sooner for everyone. There is a great deal on online courses on this site, where most of them cost just $10 a course, and if you have older kids you might find one, or two, or many courses of value.

http://www.udemy.com

You can read reviews, and even do a preview and check out various videos throughout the course within a given time frame (I think you have 4 minutes or so to go through whatever sections you want.)

They have courses on languages, writing, computer stuff, and more. I haven’t had a whole lot of time to check it out yet, but I definitely will later today.

Anyway, I thought it might help some of you out there. Happy searching. Let us know if you find something you like!

 

*Edited: Sorry, I got the date wrong!

A Beka 8th Grade History Worksheets


07 Jan

America, Land I Love

 

If you’re using A Beka’s 8th grade history book, America, Land I Love, and are looking for worksheets, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve created a page and uploaded the files I’ve created for the book. These are like the sections at the end of each chapter, but done as worksheets for easy reference. There are the Review sheets for each chapter, which list the important places, people, and dates. I’ve also included a Terms section for each chapter, so the definition and information for each set of chapter terms can be filled in. You can find these files on the A Beka – America, Land I Love page.

Free Office Program – Open Office


05 Nov

Computer

 

Have you heard of Open Office?

I thought I’d post access to this awesome resource because someone was asking for PDFs since they don’t have MS Office, and I thought maybe a lot of you aren’t aware it exists. If you use Windows, Linux, or OS X (Apple?), then this free program is available to use. An alternative to using MS Office,  it has all the goodies MS Office has – word processing, presentation (slideshow) creation, database creation, spreadsheets, drawing, and a formula option, which I suspect is for creating math sheets, but I haven’t actually used at all myself.

The great thing about this program is that in the Word Processing option you can use to save things in MS Word format, so that they can easily be opened, and, in turn, you can open documents created in MS Word. Though I haven’t tried with other types of items, I’m assuming this is probably true for those files as well. It’s a great way for you and your children to have access to using these much-needed computer tools in our high-tech society, without the hefty price tag.

Check it out!

Pay It Forward Young Readers Edition – Quizzes Uploaded


22 Oct

Pay It Forward Young Readers Edition

I always liked the movie, Pay it Forward, despite some of its rough parts, and though I was never truly was fond of the ending. I liked the general idea behind the whole “Pay It Forward” concept, though, and when I saw they had a Young Readers Edition of the book, written by Catherine Ryan Hyde, I thought I’d have my son read it to at least get a feel for the idea.

Surprise, surprise, I read it along with my son (I haven’t read the regular version) and so much is different from the movie. Wow! I mean, yeah, that’s typically how it is with most books and their movies, but it was SO different we were both a bit shocked when we saw the alternate version.

I, having seen the movie first, prefer the movie version. My son, having read the book first, prefers the book.

This was a book I had my son read on his own, and then I’d give him a quiz to make sure he’d really read it, and then we’d discuss it. Since I couldn’t find any quizzes online for it, I made my own. I’ve uploaded those here on the Pay It Forward Page here on my site.

 

Pay It Forward Movie

It’s probably best if you read the story yourself, before deciding if it’s right for your child. Due to some of the concepts, it’s recommended for (more…)

Beyond the Mask – On DVD and Amazon Streaming


12 Oct

If you were interested in Beyond the Mask, and never went to see it in the theater, then you can see it now. Netflix offers it in their DVD options, and Amazon has the DVD for sale, as well as offering it for rent on Amazon Instant Video. The DVD from Netflix for us is on its way, and I can’t wait to see it!

In case you missed the original post here is the trailer:

Let us know what you think!

How to Learn Music Online


22 Sep

Hey everyone, I wrote this for a different purpose (hence the different style), but figured it could be useful to homeschoolers, so thought I’d post it here. Would love to hear your comments on it. It was described as “not good quality.” I don’t think it sounds too bad… What do you think?

 

Learning music is a useful and enlightening skill that can benefit you throughout your life. Whether you want to learn just for the fun of it, acquire a new hobby, or reach a higher, more professional level, it’s a skill that takes a lot of time and dedication. Regular lessons can be expensive, inconvenient, or just time consuming when you factor in getting there and back. Let’s discuss how to learn music online, and possibly trim the cost, or make it work so the times are better for you.

YouTube is often a highly underutilized resource, when it comes to music education. Sure, people visit the site to see funny and entertaining videos, but did you know there are tons of how-to videos on there as well? Using YouTube, you can search for your desired instrument, and find lessons. Assuming you already have the instrument on hand, you’re able to get started on learning how to play almost immediately.

Choosing to learn via YouTube is great. If you have trouble, there’s the added benefit of being able to play that particular video over and over again. Also, you are able to progress on to the next lesson when it’s right for you. Best of all, these lessons are free, with often nothing more than having to deal with a 30-second commercial to watch before your lesson begins.

When you look at how to learn music online with YouTube, though, there are some disadvantages. First is the possibility that there are not any lessons, or limited lessons available for your chosen instrument. (At the very least, if lessons exist, you can get started using YouTube, and then move on to having a live teacher.) There’s also the fact that you don’t get personal critiquing of your playing, and suggestions on how to improve. You also can’t ask questions, but, since the Internet is so full of information, it’s possible you can find the answer online yourself. It’s up to you whether the pros outweigh the cons when choosing to learn with YouTube videos.

Did you know that you can take lessons online with a real-life person? If videos aren’t your thing, then there are various ways to get in contact with someone who is willing to teach you over the Internet. Usually you’ll use a program such as Skype, (more…)

The Book Samaritan


26 Aug

books

Get Help Acquiring Homeschooling Curriculum

Well, it’s that time again. If you haven’t started your school year already, then chances are you’ll be starting pretty soon. Have you got all your curriculum yet? Possibly so, but I’m sure there are those out there who want to homeschool and are struggling. You’ve either found a way to make do, or it’s possible you’ve delayed getting your books in hopes of being able to afford what you need later.

This is where The Book Samaritan comes in.

The Book Samaritan is a non-profit organization that runs out of Pawhuska, Oklahoma. It helps provide homeschooling materials to those financially unable to get what they need to homeschool their children.

If you’re in need of materials, you can send a letter to this organization, along with your children’s grade levels, and they’ll help you out. If you have specific curriculum requests, you can include those as well. They can’t always fulfill the specific curriculum requests, but they’ll do what they can to get you what your children need for the school year.

You’re probably asking, “But what’s the catch?” It’s simple really. When you’re finished with the materials, they don’t want you selling them. You are to either pass them on to other homeschoolers who can use them, or send them back to The Book Samaritan, so they can be used by other homeschooling families in need.

That’s it! If finances are what stand between you and your ability to homeschool, then this is a simple solution.

 

Help Others Receive Homeschooling Materials

Maybe you’re a homeschooling family that doesn’t need help with materials. Maybe you have old curriculum and learning supplies laying around.  Well, guess what? You can HELP The Book Samaritan.

The Book Samaritan exists because of donations. Selling your old material might be great for a few extra bucks, but you just might want to consider sending these items to this organization and help give someone the opportunity to homeschool. Here’s what they accept:

  • books
  • workbooks
  • kits
  • CD-Roms and DVDs
  • flashcards
  • school supplies

And of course, monetary donations are accepted as well. These funds are used to provide families with materials the organization doesn’t already have on hand.

 

Check it out. The Book Samaritan is a great organization that has already helped many homeschooling families, and will hopefully help many more in the future.

School Supplies are OUT!


11 Jul

I had to stop by Target the other day, and was hoping amongst hope that they had their supplies out. They did!! WOO! It was great. We started school this past Monday (that’s a whole different post entirely) and I was lacking a couple things. When I was there I was able to pick up most of what I was missing, so we’re good to go!

This was the best school supply shopping trip I think I’ve had. My son absolutely hates dealing with it, so I did the shopping while he was at youth group (I always enjoyed school shopping and picking things out as a kid, but I guess he wants no part of it.) It was also early evening on a weeknight, and too early for most other people to want to be buying school supplies so for the most part I had the area to myself, rather than having to hear grouchy parents and loud kids running around the Back-to-School area.

I bought extra binders last year and was able to recycle a couple from a few years back as well, so I don’t need to worry about those, which is what we spent a lot of time on last year. (Do you know how hard it is to find a 1 1/2″ binder that holds folders, or a 2″ O-ring binder??) I knew what I was lacking and went in with a mental list of what I wanted, knowing what the prices were last year, so I had a plan.

What’d I get?

(more…)

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